We are just at the end of May but the 2020 harvest is already announced in terms of production as a medium-high year and anticipated compared to the last years, in particular to 2019.
To say it is Diego Tomasi of CREA-VIT of Conegliano who, together with other experts, will provide updated advances on the next harvest on the occasion of the first focus of the Wine Triptych , an event of Veneto Agriculture and Region which, due to the emergency for Covid- 19, will take place online on 11 June (10:00 am).
In summary, at the moment the Veneto vineyard shows that it is in good health , the vegetation appears almost everywhere healthy and there are no problems with Downy mildew . Some concerns come from the golden Flavescence and above all from the Pinot Grigio Virosis , given that some Glera vineyards are strongly attacked by this pathology. However, the overall photograph for almost all grape varieties is good, so much so that the first indications confirm that the 2020 one will certainly not be a "unloaded" year, that is, with little production, apart from Pinot Gris and probably for some black grape vines. However, some areas of risk in which rainfall has been scarce so far, such as on the Euganean Hills and in the countryside, could run some risk. Generally, however, to date, the Veneto vineyard is in good health.
Going into a little more detail, it appears that in the regional vineyards the phenological phase of the plants is now advanced and flowering is present on almost all varieties, so you can already have a relatively precise idea about the production load . If flowering was early , an early vintage will also result. This means that the harvest of Chardonnay grapes, the first variety to be harvested, should begin before August 15th, even around 5-8 August for the sparkling wine bases. We are therefore talking about an early harvest compared to the average of the last few years.
Let's briefly analyze the current state of the main grape varieties grown in the Veneto.
Pinot Grigio is the variety that is most in difficulty. In the Garda area it is estimated that the yields will not exceed 100/110 quintals, while they should be slightly higher in the other areas of the Veneto. The causes of this somewhat critical situation are of a different nature: first of all the scarce rainfall of this spring, the cause of a stunted budding ; things went a little better for those who were able to irrigate before the start of this important phenological phase. It should also be remembered that in 2019 Pinot Grigio had recorded an abundant production, but this is a variety that is struggling to recover after a great production effort that occurred the previous year. As if this were not enough, heavy hailstorms that left their mark, as well as the frosts of 2017, also occurred in 2019. For all these reasons, therefore, Pinot Grigio will be this year the variety that will certainly have a lower production in all over the Veneto
The Glera (Prosecco) variety shows lower fertility than last year, especially in the Treviso area and in the Conegliano area, but it must also be said that the size of the bunches is exceptional, reaching as much as 30 cm. These two notes suggest that the yields will be this year in terms of the specifications. It is interesting to note that this lower fertility of the Glera has distant roots, specifically in the negative climatic trend recorded in the month of May 2019, when the buds differed. The consequences on the 2020 vintage, in particular in the Sylvoz breeding systems, are highlighted with a scarcity of bunches present in the upper part of the vegetation and a strong concentration in the final part of the arch, corresponding to the buds that have differentiated in the last part of May - beginning of June 2019 when the weather conditions had changed. In essence, the buds corresponding to the 8th, 10th, 12th bud of the bow are those that this year are the most fruitful, confirming how nature has gone hand in hand, almost day by day, with the weather conditions of last year.
Even the clusters of Garganega grapes from the Veronese and Vicenza areas are of considerable size, which is why productions are expected to fall within the specification, particularly in the hill areas; probably a little higher in the plains. Therefore, scarce productions are not feared.
As regards Merlot and Cabernet , production is currently estimated at -20% / -25%, especially on the Euganean Hills, in the Vicenza area and in the Lison area. Opposite situation for the red wines of Valpolicella and Bardolino for which the yields, especially for Corvinone , are in line with the specifications; the yields of Corvina and Rondinella are also moderate . Trebbiano Toscano for Custoza is also on excellent levels, so good production is expected.
On the very first indications relating to the 2020 harvest, a new pill of RadioVenetoAgricoltura , registered today, is available on the YouTube, Facebook and Twitter channels of Veneto Agricoltura, with guest Diego Tomasi.